Tuesday, January 18, 2011

A Parenting First: I Got "The Look"

Yep. It happened.

I was at church with Abs on Saturday evening. Tom was out of town, so it was just she and I. Considering the time of year (and all of the lovely illnesses I've heard are going around), I didn't want to take Abby to the nursery, not that I need to justify myself.

I was in the very back row of the auditorium; literally the seat against the wall and directly next to the door to escape if needed.

Before service started, I was standing up with her and was about to give her a bottle. She fussed for just a minute before I started feeding her.

That's when it happened.

An older woman (I'm awful with ages ... maybe early 60s?) did the slow-turn-and-glare. Her presentation read, "Why do you have your baby here with all the adults?"

I probably deserved it, considering I have been guilty of those thoughts in my day. Yes, I admit it.

Ultimately, the service went fine, but there were a few times I had to leave to go to the crying room to calm her down (which I did at the slightest hint of fussing by her).

This got me thinking, though.

What kind of "responding parent" am I going to be when it comes to "the look"?

I figure I have a few options.
  1. The snapper. I can be "that mother" who responds quickly with, "Is there a problem?" I'm not sure if I have the ability to be a snapper, though, because being one also requires the ability to come up with snappy comebacks in the event someone offers up an unwarranted remark. I also wonder if being a snapper is a good model for Abby.
  2. The glarer. This is currently the front runner, because I have an uncanny ability to get my point across without using words. I also see the benefit of this in that the execution of a well-timed glare could get my point across sufficiently while going unnoticed by Abby (and any future children).
  3. The ignorer. Do I pretend a look or a comment simply didn't happen? I'm wondering if there is a benefit to this. Does it truly give a proverbial "F you" if I don't acknowledge the attack? Not sure.
As of right now, these are the options I have come up with. Perhaps when I'm "in the field" I will come up with some others, spur-of-the-moment.

I'll keep you updated.